For the first time in history, public tours of the White House East Wing will now include a tour of the movie theater where many U.S. presidents have watched films with friends and family.
First lady Melania Trump posted the announcement on Twitter, and the White House issued a press release in tandem with her posting.
“The White House belongs to the people of this country,” Trump wrote. “I believe everyone who takes the time to visit and tour the White House should have as much access to its rich history and wonderful traditions as possible. It is my hope that our visitors truly enjoy the newest piece of the tour.”
The East Terrace cloakroom was converted into a movie theater in 1942 under the direction of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was later remodeled in 1982-1983 by President Ronald Reagan to include 51 tiered seats, and was refurbished again in 2004-2005.
President Dwight Eisenhower was a huge fan of Westerns and screened Gary Cooper films in the theater. But he refused to show any films featuring Robert Mitchum after the actor was arrested for marijuana possession.
The last film President John F. Kennedy ever saw was From Russia With Love, and President Lyndon B. Johnson screened a documentary about himself called A President’s Country 12 times in the theater.
President Jimmy Carter was a cinephile and holds the record for presidential-film watching — he reportedly saw 480 movies during his term in the White House. President Bill Clinton had eclectic choices and enjoyed films such as Schindler’s List, Braveheart, Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult, and The Big Lebowski, while President Barack Obama celebrated the 50th anniversary of To Kill a Mockingbird with a showing of the classic movie.
And what the was the first film President Trump showed in the theater after he was elected? Finding Dory — a film about a fish named Dory, who lives in Australia and is trying to reunite with her parents, who live in America
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